Copyright is over, and musicians should make themselves as pretty as they can for big brand advertisers, says top music manager and label boss Terry McBride.
McBride's Nettwerk Music manages artists including Avril Lavigne and the Barenaked Ladies, and it's been an indie label for over 20 years. He's put his thoughts into a Music Tank report published today, and a keynote at Brighton's Great Escape music festival.
It's an upbeat vision of the future that eulogises free music, mash-ups and corporate sponsorship. It's just not a vision of the future everyone is going to welcome - for example, Billy Bragg, who warned against corporate-flavoured feudalism here recently.
Last night Terry was named Music Manager of the Year by his peers. So we caught up with him today ahead of the keynote, to find out where the RIAA scourge thinks the money's going to come from.
In the report, entitled "Meet The Millenials", McBride writes -
"Discovery of new music in the digital economy will be synonymous with consumption". The money will come from ad-supported music services and subscriptions.
"Premium data services will be the new format of chic within social connections of friends and like-minded individuals," he predicts.
"Price will be a fluid definition and more indicative of a response to demand and freedom to use the file after purchase. The definition of what is ‘free’ and what is ‘paid’ will merge, and become a relative point of view."
That's one to remember when your landlord knocks on the door, demanding the rent.
"You might think I'm two months behind," you'll be able to say, "But that's a relative point of view."
Actually free music will become "an upsell technique for other music related products, e.g. concert tickets, clothing, music or artist branded physical products," reckons McBride. The recorded music helps establish a larger commercial presence. And don't forget micro-monetisation of P2P recommendations, he writes.
So let's hear it from the horses mouth. Show us the money, Terry!
"A New Middle Class"
"A lot of money is coming in from other brands. We'll have Dorito™-sponsored bands," he enthused today.
"They'll come to an artist with a $5m ad budget, and they will say will add x money to your business, but we want something for that."
Some people might think that getting pretty for Dorito™ [Frito Lay is a division of Pepsi] might not be in the spirit of RnR, we countered. Not a problem, said Terry - in the New World Order bands would have to spend a lot more time thinking how to commercialise themselves.
"Music has always been free," he says.
But doesn't the alarm go off when you walk out of HMV with a load of CDs down your trousers?
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